Global Disability Summit 2018

More than 700 delegates to discuss aspects of disability inclusion at London summit
Logo: Global Disability Summit 2018. Credit: DfID

The Global Disability Summit 2018 is going to take place tomorrow, 24 July, in London and will be co-hosted by the UK government's Department for International Development (DfID), the International Disability Alliance (IDA) and the government of Kenya. This year's summit will bring together more than 700 delegates from governments, donors, the private sector, NGOs and Disabled People's Organisations (DPOs), who will discuss four major themes:

  • dignity and respect for all
  • inclusive education
  • economic empowerment
  • technology & innovation

Light for the World will be represented at the Summit by colleagues and board members from around the globe, including Senior Inclusive Education Advisor Nafisa Baboo, Light for the World UK chair Tom Shakespeare, and Light for the World UK board members Susan Scott-Parker and Nidhi Singhal.

Watch this space for some exciting announcements on inclusive education!

The aim of the summit

The Summit aims to transform the lives of people with disabilities by raising global attention and focus on a hugely neglected area, mobilizing new global and national commitments to meet and implement the ambition set out in the global goals and UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and showcasing best practice and evidence from across the World.

“We need action, not words.  We need to change the world, not just understand it better.” - Tom Shakespeare 

Charter for Change

In the run-up to the Summit, DfID asked all participants to sign up to a Charter for Change asking for real change through the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and the delivery of the Sustainable Development Goals for persons with disabilities.

Light for the World is proud to be a signatory of the Charter.

Civil Society raises its voice

One example of the importance of civil society around the Global Disability Summit is the Statement on Action on Inclusive Education.

The Statement commits organisations to concrete actions to improve the lives of tens of millions of children with disabilities in low-income countries who are currently shut out from school.

It has gained commitments from influential actors including the Global Campaign for Education, Save the Children, Sightsavers, UNICEF, the World Bank and many, many more!

Light for the World feels honoured that our colleagues Nidhi Singhal, Nafisa Baboo were among the many involved in making this happen. 

Another example would be the success of the International Disability Alliance and other actors in ensuring strong representation and inputs from Disabled People Organisations around the world, both in the planning of the Summit and in the Summit programme itself, as explained by Vladimir Cuk, Executive Director of IDA:

"To establish a broad consultation and participation of organisations of persons with disabilities, we started a coordination mechanism together with a number of organisations of persons with disabilities and other civil society organizations. The mechanism decided on and prepared the civil society forum, provided recommendations for speakers for the summit etc. The summit was truly organised according to the nothing about us without us principle."

Group photo: board members of the International Disability Alliance. Credit: IDA

Light for the World would like to congratulate DfID and IDA for putting the issue so firmly on the agenda and for ensuring the voices of people with disabilities have been included throughout the Summit process.

That well-known African proverb on team work says it all: ‘If you want to go far, go together’.

Watch the Livestream (mirrored from the DfID YouTube page)